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Board of Trustees to consider expanding Ohio University’s Nursing program during March meetings

Capital projects, financial and enrollment updates slated for March agenda


The Ohio University Board of Trustees will consider extending the University’s nursing program to the Eastern Campus and hear an update on the Small House Strategy during its meetings on March 21 and 22 at Walter Hall in Athens.

Key agenda items, efforts and initiatives that OHIO’s Board and senior leadership are scheduled to discuss include:

Eastern Campus Bachelor of Science in Nursing program
When: Academics and Student Success Committee, 10:15 a.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

The Trustees will consider a resolution to extend the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program to the Eastern Campus as a satellite program of the degree offered in Athens. An analysis of the Belmont County/Upper Ohio River Valley region demonstrated the need for the degree program, and area hospitals have already offered their support.

If the Trustees approve the extension, an application to the Ohio Board of Nursing will be made in Spring 2019, with the goal of beginning admissions in Fall Semester 2019.

Small House Planning Strategy updates
When: Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 3:25 p.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

University administrators will provide final Small House Strategy recommendations to the Board of Trustees. The administration has been studying the houses, which surround the Athens Campus, to develop a strategy for their use since late 2016.

The recommendations include:

  • A change of occupancy in Trisolini House, which is currently facilitated by the Academic Engagement Center. The house would be repurposed for Culinary Services, which is currently housed in the West Union Street Office Center. Renovations would cost $1.5 million and are on the agenda for consideration as part of the capital projects outlined below.
  • Offering Pilcher House to the community for non-University use, as the site is not integral to campus character and not programmatically aligned with University needs.
  • Removal of Brown House due to its poor condition and structural damage, with the site retained by the University.

Recommendations on the remainder of the small houses were previously made (see page 140 of the March 2019 Board of Trustees agenda).

Capital projects
When: Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 3:25 p.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

The Board will consider the following capital projects:

  • Lindley Hall roof replacement: The Board will consider authorizing $907,000 to the budget, previously approved at $500,000, and would address significant issues with leaking.
  • Trisolini House renovation for Auxiliaries: The $1.5 million project would convert the house from academic use to administrative offices as part of the Administrative Relocation Strategy.
  • Grosvenor Hall Administrative Relocation Renovation: This $7.5 million project would address critical deferred maintenance needs, which will allow occupants from the West Union Street Office Center and Human Resources and Training Center to move into the building in late 2020. UPDATE: This item has been removed from the March agenda and a revision will be considered in June.
  • Ohio University Lancaster Campus infrastructure improvements: This $500,000 project would improve concrete sidewalks, steps and handrails across the Lancaster Campus, as well as repair a concrete surface drive and parking area and repave the asphalt parking lots on the east side of campus.
  • Respecting the principles outlined in the Ridges Framework plan, the Ridges utilities decentralization and site preparation $2.6 million project includes demolition of Ridges Buildings 29 and 15, which will eliminate structures in poor condition and improve access to surrounding buildings, and the addition of a new ramp into Building 13.

Ohio Rural Health Association creation
When: Governance and Compensation Committee, 9:15 a.m. March 22, Walter Hall 104

The Board will consider the creation of the non-profit Ohio Rural Health Association, which will position OHIO as the leader in addressing rural health in the state

The Appalachian Rural Health Institute in the College of Health Sciences and Professions facilitated a statewide effort to create the association. Some financial support has come from the National Rural Health Association. Affiliating the new association with Ohio University will provide networking opportunities, educational resources and health equity advocacy for rural Ohioans.

School of Dance, Film, and Theater deconsolidation
When: Academics and Student Success Committee, 10:15 a.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

The Board will consider a proposal to de-consolidate the School of Dance, Film and Theater in the College of Fine Arts. The three individual programs were originally consolidated in 2012, but faculty, staff and administrators prefer to split them into their original schools provide improved curriculum and create budgetary efficiencies.

There will be no change to any current degrees, minors or certificates offered through the existing school. The move will restore school identities, improving morale, and they are expected to be more desirable to future students.

Sustainability update
When: Resources, Facilities, and Affordability Committee, 3:25 p.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

There will be an update on the restructuring of Ohio University Sustainability, including the establishment of a new Sustainability Committee and an associated hub structure. Three new hubs, the Sustainable Living, Sustainable Administration and Sustainable Living hubs, were created and will be led by faculty coordinators. The faculty coordinators will share their new sustainability initiatives with the Board as part of the presentation.

Engagement ecosystem update
When: Main Board Meeting, 10 a.m. March 22, Walter Hall 104

Executive Vice President and Provost Chaden Djalali will lead the Board in a discussion on building and enhancing the University’s engagement ecosystem. The discussion will include an overview of OHIO’s approach toward a common and expanded understanding of what constitutes the “engagement ecosystem” by aligning our definitions with national trends, focusing particularly on the definition of community engagement by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning.

A panel of faculty and staff whose work represents several different kinds of engagement will also present to the Board.

Financial and enrollment updates
When: Joint Committee, 1:25 p.m. March 21, Walter Hall 104

Administrators will provide financial and enrollment updates, and the Board will consider tuition and fee increases related to the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine.

The budget update will include an update from the January budget planning conversation, including updates on employee compensation, revenue enhancement strategies, cost reduction plans and enrollment strategies. An overview of OHIO enrollments over the past decade, as well as efforts in place to affect student yield and a look at the most recent fall progression numbers will be included.

The Board will consider tuition, fee and rate increases for the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, consistent with legislation enacted by the Ohio General Assembly later this year. These include 2.5 percent increases in Heritage College instructional fees, technology fees and non-resident surcharges.

Administrators will also discuss the upcoming FY21-26 Capital Improvement Plan. The plan is a projection of the University’s priorities at a point in time. It is updated annually and formally updated every other year. The plan this year will reflect priorities for FY21-26, including FY20 annual priorities and the FY21-22 state capital request.

The full agenda for the March Board of Trustees meeting can be found on the Trustees’ website. The main board meeting will be streamed live at this link.